Category: Editors’ pick

Nikki Haley Embodies What’s Wrong With the Republican Party

In January, 2016, Nikki Haley, who was then the first female governor of South Carolina, delivered the Republican response to Barack Obama’s final State of the Union address. She dutifully criticized the two-term President, trotting out a few G.O.P. talking points on the national debt, health-care reform, and the threat of terrorism. But she also rebuked her own party, saying, “We need to recognize our contributions to the erosion of the public trust in America’s leadership. We need to accept that we’ve played a role in how and why our government is broken.” At the time, Donald Trump was leading ... Read more

Nothing Illegal In Trump-Zelensky Call

Tim Morrison, a former National Security Council official under Trump, told Rep. Adam Schiff in testimony today that he was never concerned that Trump discussed anything illegal in his July 25 phone call with the Ukrainain president. A top National Security Council (NSC) official who listened to President Donald Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymr Zelensky testified to Congress today that he did not believe Trump had discussed anything illegal during the conversation. “I want to be clear, I was not concerned that anything illegal was discussed,” former NSC Senior Director for European Affairs Tim Morrison testified ... Read more

Former CIA Director Brennan: Votes were swayed by Russian influence

Former CIA director John Brennan speaks during a forum on election security titled, “2020 Vision: Intelligence and the U.S. Presidential Election” at the National Press Club in Washington, U.S., October 30, 2019. (photo credit: JOSHUA ROBERTS / REUTERS) WASHINGTON – Former CIA Director John Brennan said on Wednesday that at least some American voters were swayed as a result of Russia‘s 2016 election interference operation, a statement that went further than the official assessments of U.S. intelligence agencies and lawmakers. Speaking alongside other former intelligence figures at the National Press Club in Washington, Brennan said he was “sure, personally, that those Russian efforts changed the mind of at least one voter.” “Whether it was one voter ... Read more

Impeachment inquiry: Alexander Vindman, NSC aide and lieutenant colonel, testifies

The newest witness for the House impeachment inquiry is Alexander Vindman, a National Security Council staffer and a US Army lieutenant colonel who arrived for closed-door testimony Tuesday morning — and he says he expressed serious concerns internally about Trump’s demands that Ukraine investigate the Bidens. Vindman is the top Ukraine expert on the NSC staff — and his appearance is particularly noteworthy because the NSC is part of the White House staff, making him the first White House aide to testify in the inquiry. (He has chosen to comply with a subpoena from the House rather than attempting to ... Read more

Trump impeachment inquiry should consider Turkey, Russia, Saudi Arabia, and more

Holding up authorized military aid to Ukraine in an effort to coerce the Ukrainian government into smearing Joe Biden and validating an absurd conspiracy theory that aims to exonerate Russia for 2016 election interference is a perfectly impeachable offense. In that sense, the desire of House Democrats to avoid confusing the issue by turning their impeachment inquiry into a sprawling investigation or a comprehensive accounting of Donald Trump’s crimes is understandable. And certainly if Senate Republicans indicate that they are prepared to hold Trump accountable swiftly in exchange for Democrats agreeing to move swiftly so that the country can move ... Read more

Ukraine proves the Russia charges

Ukraine proves the Russia charges  by digby My Salon column this morning: I hear a lot of pundits and analysts insisting that the Democrats have finally decided to move on impeachment because the Ukraine scandal is so easy to understand. They also insist that all the earlier evidence of Donald Trump’s lawbreaking, such as the 10 obstruction of justice charges in the Mueller report and the ongoing violations of the emoluments clause, should be set aside as articles of impeachment because they are simply too confusing. That is nonsense. It’s the same story. It’s true that the notorious phone call ... Read more

Trump’s latest interview with Hannity was the height of shamelessness

One day after caving to public pressure and reversing course on his plan to host next year’s G7 at a resort he owns, the president who broke decades of precedent by refusing to divest from his business interests tried to turn “corruption” into a line of attack against one of his political rivals. During an hour-long interview on Monday’s installment of Hannity, President Donald Trump claimed that if his sons Donald Jr. and Eric accepted payments from “questionable” foreign sources, “it would be the biggest story of the century.” But Trump’s suggestion is the height of hypocrisy. The Trump Organization ... Read more

Kamala Harris’ call to suspend Trump’s Twitter account, explained

To say President Donald Trump has a penchant for firing off some weird, disturbing, and even dangerous tweets is an understatement. But should he be kicked off Twitter entirely? Sen. Kamala Harris (D-CA) thinks so, and many others agree — but not everyone. Harris and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) clashed at Tuesday’s Democratic debate when the California senator tried to push her Massachusetts counterpart to call for the president’s Twitter account to be suspended. “Here we have Donald Trump, who has 65 million Twitter followers and is using that platform as the president of the United States to openly intimidate ... Read more

Trump ex-Russia adviser Fiona Hill testifies in impeachment inquiry

WASHINGTON – Donald Trump’s former Russia adviser testified for more than nine hours on Monday behind closed doors, the latest witness summoned in the impeachment inquiry against the U.S. president over his request that Ukraine investigate a political rival. Fiona Hill, former senior director for European and Russian Affairs on Trump’s National Security Council, made no comments to reporters on arriving or leaving a secure room in the U.S. Capitol where she spoke to the House Intelligence Committee and two other panels. Democratic Representative Jamie Raskin told reporters Hill “was a remarkably thorough and authoritative witness” who recalled “particular events ... Read more

Impeachment inquiry news: The past 48 hours in explained

The Trump Ukraine scandal — about to enter its fourth week — saw a number of outstanding if relatively minor questions answered over the weekend, all while President Trump worked to further define his strategy to counter Democrats’ impeachment inquiry against him. The central question around Trump’s interactions with Ukraine is not whether he pushed that country to investigate potential presidential rival former Vice President Joe Biden, but whether there was quid pro quo in the president’s requests to have Biden investigated. In a Saturday preview of his upcoming congressional testimony, a representative for US ambassador to the EU Gordon ... Read more